Old Freelander For Winter. Any Good??

RiflemanTom

Old-Salt
Book Reviewer
#1
Now that the snow's finally arrived, I find myself yet again without a car to use, as my Bimmer is completely useless in this weather. Run flat low profiles & snow & Ice equals 0 traction & a bent car, so I've been looking on Autotrader for a 4x4. I've only got about £1,500 - £2k to spend on it though as it'll end up sitting in the garage for the other 9 months of the year.

Anyway, I've been looking at what I can get, and I quite fancy a Freelander. Seems like a good car, and for the money I want to spend I seem to be able to get a 1998 - 2002 1.8 with service history, and around 50 - 90k on the clock.

However, I know shit all about motors. So do any of you mechanical types know if this is a good idea, or would I be wasting my dosh?
 
#3
Ours has served us well so far, up in't North and getting plenty of snow! Purely for the snow though, I'd say there was better out there for the same price though.
 
#4
Now that the snow's finally arrived, I find myself yet again without a car to use, as my Bimmer is completely useless in this weather. Run flat low profiles & snow & Ice equals 0 traction & a bent car, so I've been looking on Autotrader for a 4x4. I've only got about £1,500 - £2k to spend on it though as it'll end up sitting in the garage for the other 9 months of the year.

Anyway, I've been looking at what I can get, and I quite fancy a Freelander. Seems like a good car, and for the money I want to spend I seem to be able to get a 1998 - 2002 1.8 with service history, and around 50 - 90k on the clock.

However, I know shit all about motors. So do any of you mechanical types know if this is a good idea, or would I be wasting my dosh?
Actually even a BMW would work I bet if you fitted it with 2 pairs of proper M+S Winter tires (Continental TS 830 or Michelin Alpine Series usually come top in tests). Certainly cheaper than buying another ride which you will also have to insure, maintain and equip with said M+S tires, SUV 'all weather' Tires are not recommended for regular use on snow, breaking being the most prominent of problems wit curb weight of SUV's. If you need to get up steep inclines where even winter tires struggle, 60£ will buy you a pair of self tightening, self adjusting snow chains. On and off in under a minute with a bit of practicing.
 
#5
For their price, a second hand Freelander is not too bad value for money and handle okay in snow etc with good tyres fitted. Problem is that you will then have two cars to tax, two to insure etc. Take the advice above, winter prepare your current car, much cheaper and in most circumstances, just as good
 
#6
Buy an audi quattro next time! And winter tyres.
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#8
If you are after a purely utilitarian vehicle for the snow, why not get an old Hilux or similar? When the summer kicks back in you can use it for carting crap around, trips to the dump etc.
 
#9
Freelander's are an utter pile of shite, at low end budget you will end up with somebody else's problem car.
If you want a cheap 4x4 thats reasonably capable try a Jeep Grand Cherokee, pants on fuel consumption but will do the business. Make sure its got reasonable tyres on and it will do the business in comfort. If you get one with a factory tow pack you even get a limited slip diff on the back.
Built in Austria by Steyr, I had one before the current TD5 Discovery and the Jeep would go pretty much anywhere the TD5 will
 
#10
If you are after a purely utilitarian vehicle for the snow, why not get an old Hilux or similar? When the summer kicks back in you can use it for carting crap around, trips to the dump etc.
Hilux's aren't very good in snow unless you put as dumpy bag of sand in the back!
 

Ravers

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
#11
Hilux's aren't very good in snow unless you put as dumpy bag of sand in the back!
I would've thought they'd be the nuts? 4x4, indestructible and lightweight, good combo for snow.
 

jarrod248

LE
Gallery Guru
#12
Freelander's are an utter pile of shite, at low end budget you will end up with somebody else's problem car.
If you want a cheap 4x4 thats reasonably capable try a Jeep Grand Cherokee, pants on fuel consumption but will do the business. Make sure its got reasonable tyres on and it will do the business in comfort. If you get one with a factory tow pack you even get a limited slip diff on the back.
Built in Austria by Steyr, I had one before the current TD5 Discovery and the Jeep would go pretty much anywhere the TD5 will
Agree freelanders are just useful for scrap.
 
#13
I would've thought they'd be the nuts? 4x4, indestructible and lightweight, good combo for snow.
To light on the back end un-laden makes them very tail-happy in snow.
Plus they are the most uncomfortable 4x4 on the planet. Vastly over-rated and long trading on the good name of the Land Cruiser
 
#14
Tyres are the most important thing when it comes to traction in wet/snowy conditions - even a 4wd like a freelander is no good unless it's properly shod. I'm with Viceroy, get a set of new wheels and (higher profile) tyres for winter use. If you get new rims you can then swap them whenever you see fit. The other point is to watch how you drive - in snow, a knobbly set of tyres will get you moving, but bear in mind you will still have less grip when it comes to cornering and stopping.
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#17
Most people don't know how to drive a 4x4 and get over confidant.
Truth.

Buy what you like, but my D reg Defender cost under £2k. Its a couple hundred quid a year to insure and about the same to tax. The 2.5TDI motor gives 30mpg and because its a HCPU I can put a ton of anything in the back and it hardly notices.

This morning I followed a Bentley Continental into work. In modorate snow he was stuck. Spinning his wheels. In first gear I crushed the 4' ice and snow that the ploughs had chucked up, crawled over it and bounced back down onto the road. £130k vs £2k? Meh. I didnt stop grinning until my PA announced she had got Sushi for our client lunch meeting.
 
#18
Most people don't know how to drive a 4x4 and get over confidant.
It was good news for me though, as the missus has had 4 wheel drives for the past 12 years, and now drives a vauxhall zafira, I insisted we ditch (not literally) the 4 by 4 because we no longer need to tow anything and they cost a fortune to run, but of course shes been banging her gums about getting another, and this has shut her up !! result ! if I put my jap tin can yaris 1 litre off the road Im sure I could hop out and push it back on !! (theres tempting fate for you !)
 

TheIronDuke

ADC
Book Reviewer
#19
It was good news for me though, as the missus has had 4 wheel drives for the past 12 years,
There is no shame in falling in love with a Dyke. No shame at all. I have been close on one or two occasions myself. No shame at all.

84% of heterosexuals drive Defenders. I saw that in a documentary on BBC2.
 
#20
There is no shame in falling in love with a Dyke. No shame at all. I have been close on one or two occasions myself. No shame at all.

84% of heterosexuals drive Defenders. I saw that in a documentary on BBC2.
*groan* dyke, yes, Im from norfolk. ditch is the proper anglo saxon word, dyke is viking, cos we were in the danelaw.
 

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